A project by children’s charity Barnardo’s designed to help boys who have been subjected to sexual abuse and exploitation has been granted £184,000 by the government.
The scheme, by Barnardo’s, will feature on-the-ground work in eight areas of England and Wales. Running until March next year, it will provide a variety of support to identified male victims, something which is often unavailable to boys elsewhere. The support will be focused in the police and crime commissioner-defined regions of: the West Midlands, Warwickshire, West Mercia, Avon and Somerset, along with three areas over the border in Wales: the North, the South Dyfed and Gwent.
Barnardo’s claim that around a third of all victims of sexual abuse and exploitation are boys, many of whom are at much higher risk of mental health problems, drug abuse, homelessness, criminal activity and isolation as they grow older.
Javed Khan is Barnardo’s chief executive. He thanked the government for their support.
“We welcome this funding, which will enable Barnardo’s to develop a greater understanding of the assessment and support required for boys and young men with a background of sexual abuse and trauma. Barnardo’s has identified that young male victims of sexual abuse are under-represented in services supporting abuse victims, whilst over-represented within the criminal justice system.”